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I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

Charleston, South...
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I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

We will be waking up & spending the night at the OF Inn. On this particular day we would like to tour the Upper Geyser area and the Black Sand & Biscuit Basin. We were also hoping to hike to Mystic Falls and at some point in the day picnic at either the Firehole River site or the Nez Perce site.

I've been studying my bible,Yellowstone Treasures, but I still can't wrap my head around it all. The maps and suggested routes just overwhelm me. Is it doable to see all of this in a day? If so, what is the best way to tackle it? We had considered taking the 8am Ranger led Geyser Hill walk that leaves from the OF visitor center. Might this be the best way to tour the area? What of the above will it cover?

PS. Our day prior to this one will be devoted to West Thumb, Midway Basin and Lower Basin.

Thanks in advance!

Spery, Iowa
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1. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

Since you are staying at Old Faithful looks like 2 nights? You can view some of it in the evenings and early morning to avoid the biggest crowds. You will want to check the visitor center for predictions when you arrive. Hours: Old Faithful Visitor Education Center

4/20-5/25: 9 am-6 pm

5/26-9/30: 8 am-8 pm

10/1-11/4: 9 am-5 pm

Yellowstone's newest visitor center offers dynamic exhibits about hydrothermal features. Geyser eruption predictions are posted, or call ahead, 307-344-2751.

That can help plan your tour of the basin there around possible geyser eruptions. You can take a tour or explore on your own. Really a personal preference there. If you see people gathered at one- just ask politely and they will usually be happy to fill you in.

It is easy to get information overload. Just take it as it comes once you are there. No amount of planning and scheduling can predict when something wonderful happens to come along to change everything :)

Charleston, South...
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2. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

Thank you for your helpful info. I will add it to my notes. :) Specifically, do you know if the Ranger led tour of the Upper Basin encompasses Black Sand or Biscuit Basin? Also, when exploring this area (esp. Biscuit Basin), will we most likely be setting off on foot from OFI or driving and parking somewhere? I'm not good at judging distance on a map.

Spery, Iowa
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3. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

I have never done the ranger program, so not sure? My Treasures is on loan, but I will attempt an answer, lol. You can walk to Biscuit Basin from OF. There is a paved bike path part of the way. Goes down a hill if I remember correctly- and across the highway. My husband walked it, I met him with the car (bad knee). Black Sand I believe you drive to.

Spery, Iowa
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4. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

Really depends on how far you want to walk, but if you have the time and are able, it never hurts to walk and see everything in between.

N. Idaho
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5. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

No, I doubt the ranger tour does Black Sand or Biscuit. There are usually some specific walks in each of those basins. They are not really walkable from the OF Visitor Center (well, OK, they are, but I'm driving!). I think you can easily do all that in one day. Both Black Sand and Biscuit are pretty small. Might take an hour each if you spend a lot of time there. You might be able to do them the day before as well.

The picnic area you are focusing on is probably Nez Perce Creek and is right off the Fountain Flat Dr. It is OK, but somehow it feels exposed to me. I feel like you overlook the road too much there. I do like one of the areas further toward Madison right by the river, only has a couple of tables. I <gasp> dont have my Yellowstone Treasures book with me, so am not sure which picnic area is Firehole River one. (It seems to me there are several along the Firehole River??)

This is all going to work out for you once you get there and see how everything is laid out.

Pam

N. Idaho
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6. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

OK, I looked at the picnic area map on the www.nps.gov/yell site and see where Firehole River is. The one I am thinking of is in that area, but on the west side of the road. Maybe it is just a pull out with no tables! There may be some fly fisherman along there. I always love to watch them fish. Whisky Flat is nice, but not on the river.

Laughing at thbergs...because I would do that too! that walk just looks so hot and dry!

Pam

Charleston, South...
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7. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

I know it's all going to come together once we're there, but I'd much rather be researching and planning than cleaning the house!!! Thanks to you all for being so patient and helpful. :)

PS. My 14 yr. old son just informed me that we have NOTHING to eat in the house (not true), but I certainly can't be expected to grocery shop if I'm surrounded by maps, frantically planning, right?

Edited: 02 June 2012, 21:17
Spery, Iowa
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8. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

time to start teaching survival skills to that 14 year old! He has no idea the priority level of planning a trip to Yellowstone is number one, while feeding him is down the list :) And after your trip, you can come clean my house as well, lol! Actually, I would have loved to make the whole trek to Biscuit and back but unless I wanted to be carried back, it wasn't going to happen with the knee. There were fishermen there for me to watch as I waited with my book for hubby to arrive.

Billings, Montana
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9. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

The hike to Biscuit Basin from Old Faithful Inn is 5 miles round trip. It is an easy trail with virtually no elevation gain. We skied it this winter. You will definitely need to take water with you.

Deb

Albany, New York
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10. Re: I really need some help planning our Upper Geyser Day

I LOVE IT!!! floridaascgirl.......You sound just like me!! (which may NOT be a good thing!!! LOL) We are going for the first time in early august and I have been obsessing over our days!! Trying not to over plan....but for a planner that is very difficult!!! I wrote out a basic itinerary, but then I was like ok.....we are doing for example....Norris areas but what will that look like, how long will it take, should we plan a certain amount of time??? I was doing this for all of it when I finally said,STOP!!!!!! (and I actually listened to myself this time!) Now I just have what I want to see in each area where we are staying and hopefully we will get to it....if not, we have to go back!!! ENJOY your trip!!!!